Big Plastic Ten Commandments, Holy Land USA
Big Plastic Ten Commandments, Holy Land USA

Ten Commandments Down for the Count. Rt. 666 Ready for a Comeback?

After a federal judge ordered the removal of the two and 1/2 ton granite Ten Commandments from Alabama's state courthouse on Aug 27, other state were forced to ponder the threat to their own public displays of God's laws.

Alabama's tablets were wheeled away and put in "windowless" storage for an undetermined period. Mississippi has offered to adopt the tablets, and send them on tour around the USA.

Talk radio was obsessed with the feud during our last road trip.

Rte. 666.
Rte. 666.

Judeo-Christian boosters of sacred object replicas may need to defend the ramparts around other Ten Commandments sites.

We support this effort -- but not because we think the ACLU has gone too far, or that the principles on the tablets are fundamental underpinnings of the American judicial system.

It's because these are tourist attractions, and there are no plans for replacement with anything better. Now we have one less reason to stop in a county seat town square, places already lacking when it comes to points of interest...

And what's next -- the World's Largest Ten Commandments, because it is visible from federally owned satellites?

Also, let's consider why no one leapt to the defense of Route 666 when it came under attack earlier this year and was renamed to a less portentous string of digits. The Number of the Beast was removed from a lonely highway that cuts across a corner of Colorado, New Mexico and Utah (almost immediately, all the defunct metal signs were stolen -- either by road memorabilia collectors or Satanists).

The "666" designation was clearly nixed on religious grounds, at no small cost to state road departments and tax payers. While we heard nary a bleat from transgendered pagans or rabid atheists, there were comments by some Christians, along the lines of "good riddance." Yet Christians should have been defending "666" instead of allowing this subtle erosion of their Good Book symbology.

Perhaps if they had drawn the lines for the Final Battle there, in the blasted zones of the southwest, there'd still be a tourist attraction in Alabama. [September, 2003]

Nation of Tablets

There are almost 4,000 replica Ten Commandment tablets in civic locations across the country. A brief sampling of monuments in the cross-hairs:

  • 4-ft. tall Commandments - nationwide, sponsored by the Fraternal Order of Eagles, to mark the 1956 release of Cecil B. DeMille's movie Ten Commandments. They can be found in front of courthouses, libraries and town halls.
  • Grand Junction, Colorado - City Hall. Lawsuit underway.
  • Brainerd, Minnesota - Crow Wing County courthouse
  • Jefferson City, Missouri - Capitol grounds. Since 1958.
  • Miles City, Montana - Spared by the local ACLU if moved to a less prominent spot and surrounded by a goofy Evolution of Law display, Custer County decided in 2003 to move it to a museum instead. Seen on road trip, still on the lawn as of 8/28/03.
  • Clovis, New Mexico- erected 1967.
  • Mandan, North Dakota- Morton County Courthouse
  • Kentucky- State Capitol. In storage.
  • Cincinnati, Ohio - Clergy and supporters contemplated a standoff with bulldozers before four 3-ft. high monuments were removed from public school grounds on June 9, 2003.
  • Everett, Washington - Battling to keep its 6-ft. tall replica at the old City Hall.
  • Supreme Court, Washington DC (this one may squeak by since the marble frieze also features Moses and other ancient law givers.)

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July 6, 2020

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